Statement Opposing FDA Regulation on Tobacco

Published February 27, 2007

Effective regulations gradually phase out the most hazardous products, and encourage the development of and transition to lower risk products. Effective product regulations also adequately inform consumers of relative and comparable product risks. In sharp contrast, S. 625 protects the most hazardous tobacco product (cigarettes), the largest cigarette company (Philip Morris) and the largest cigarette brand (Marlboro) from market competition from far less hazardous noncombustible tobacco products by misleading consumers to incorrectly believe that smokeless tobacco products are just as hazardous as cigarettes, and by prohibiting truthful harm reduction marketing claims by smokeless tobacco products that are directed towards already addicted cigarette smokers.

Cigarettes kill fifty percent of addicted smokers, and up to 63,000 American nonsmokers annually (from secondhand smoke and fires). In contrast, smokeless tobacco kills about one perecent of addicted users, and ZERO nonusers. Swedish smokeless (snus) and other new low nitrosamine noncombustible tobacco products pose even fewer risks. Smokers who switch to smokeless products can sharply reduce their disease and death risks.